Osum Oil Sands Corp. gets regulatory nod for Taiga

Osum Oil Sands Corp. gets regulatory nod for Taiga
Additional financing needed to sanction 35,000 bpd SAGD project 

Calgary upstart Osum Oil Sands Corp. has received regulatory approval for a 35,000-barrel-per-day oil sands project near Cold Lake.

The project, dubbed Taiga, will tap a reservoir estimated to contain 359 million barrels of proved and probable reserves. In a statement, Steve Spence, Osum’s president and chief executive officer, called the approval a “significant milestone forOsum on our path to full-scale operated commercial production.”

Osum is one of several outfits with significant land holdings in Alberta’s Grosmont carbonate, a trove of bitumen embedded in dense rock said to contain in excess of 400 billion barrels of oil in place.

The company has not released a timeline for development of Taiga, but building the project will require additional sources of financing, it said in the statement.

Privately-held Osum counts Warburg Pincus, Blackstone Capital Partners, Camcor Partners Inc., Kern Partners, Goldman Sachs and the investment arms of both the governments of Singapore and South Korea among its current financial backers.

The company has no production, but has said it will use cash generated by Taiga to develop its carbonate holdings, where it has partnered on a pilot project with Laricina Energy Ltd. Taiga is a steam-assisted, gravity drainage project located in the Lower Grand Rapids and Clearwater formations.

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